Indianapolis – November 4, 2019 – Kenzie Academy, an online and in-person college alternative that creates jobs for tomorrow’s economy by providing technology training to anyone looking to accelerate their career, today announced they have raised $100 million for student tuition financing, backed by San Francisco based Community Investment Management (CIM), an institutional impact investment manager. This money will enable thousands of Americans to access Kenzie’s outcomes-based programs and allow Kenzie to rapidly expand its learning offerings across the entire country
“There are millions of Americans who are barred from high-quality post-secondary education because of where they live and their financial situation. And many who are ‘lucky enough’ to go to college find themselves buried in debt and without a job,” said Kenzie Academy Co-founder and CEO Chok Ooi. “This $100 million will level the playing field, enabling deserving individuals, regardless of their background, to access high-quality training that leads to a high paying job in tech for only $100 upfront. Kenzie will be scaling our online classroom to teach engineering skills to anyone, anywhere, and then find them the types of jobs that will change their lives.”
With the goal of attracting 10,000 new students in the next three years and as part of a long-held effort to pass on savings to students, Kenzie is redesigning its Income Share Agreement (ISA) program as part of CIM’s investment, lowering both its monthly repayment rate and the maximum amount students could pay, known as the payment cap, effective immediately and applying to all current students and alumni. Students who utilize an ISA to enroll in the program only start making payments after they graduate and get a job earning $40,000 or more annually.
“We are excited to support Kenzie Academy in their mission to make technology training more accessible for all Americans,” said Jacob Haar, Co-founder and Managing Partner of CIM. “Kenzie is equipping the talent beyond Silicon Valley to fill the technology jobs of today which are located across the country. This innovative and aligned financing demonstrates Kenzie’s commitment to prepare their graduates with the skills to succeed and offer students from diverse communities and backgrounds the opportunity to pursue technology careers.”
Kenzie recently raised $7.8 million in Series A funding led by Rethink Ed and Rise of the Rest. These ISA and Series A investors selected Kenzie as a portfolio investment for its tightly focused revitalization model for American communities outside of traditional NYC and SF tech hubs.
Kenzie Academy’s mission is to bring tech opportunity to all Americans, especially those that have been left behind in the digital economy, by giving students the option to earn a paycheck and build their resume while enrolled, as well as to take advantage of its ISA offering. With growing enrollment each year, Kenzie is transforming student’s lives with better job options that place every single graduate in a job role. Kenzie has enrolled over 400 students to date.
About Kenzie Academy
Kenzie Academy is a college alternative that creates jobs for tomorrow’s economy by providing technology training to anyone looking to accelerate their career. Kenzie’s one-year project-based curriculum in Software Engineering and UX Engineering was created by industry practitioners and designed to parallel today’s workplace, providing students with an industry aligned experience that leads directly to rewarding careers in technology. Employers are struggling to find workforce-ready job candidates because traditional four-year universities and short-term bootcamps aren’t adequate preparation. With roots in Indianapolis and remote students in over 40 states, Kenzie is solving this problem by training untapped talent in Middle America and throughout the U.S., connecting employers with candidates equipped with the skills they need. With an affordable price point and financing options that make education accessible for all, Kenzie Academy is closing the opportunities gap for Americans that have been left behind by today’s economy. For additional information about Kenzie Academy, please visit www.kenzie.academy.
About Community Investment Management
CIM is an institutional impact investment firm that provides strategic debt funding to scale and demonstrate responsible innovation in lending to advance financial inclusion, promote economic development and drive widespread adoption of such innovation by the financial mainstream. More information is available at https://www.cim-llc.com.